Effects of brain-derived neurotrophic factor and nerve growth factor on remaining neurons in the lesioned nucleus basalis magnocellularis

Ad J. Dekker, Anne M. Fagan, Fred H. Gage, Leon J. Thal

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21 Scopus citations

Abstract

Rats received a unilateral lesion of the nucleus basalis magnocellularis (NBM) by infusion of ibotenic acid. Starting 2 weeks after the lesion, the animals were treated with nerve growth factor (NGF) or brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) by intraparenchymal infusion of 3 μg per day for 4 weeks. Lesioned control animals received a similar amount of cytochrome c. The activity of cholone acethyltransferase (ChAT) in the frontal neocortex was signigicantly reduced by the lesion (-39%). However, the intraparenchymal treatment with NGF or BDNF did not affect cortical ChAT activity. The number of p75 NGF receptor-immunoreactive neurons in the NBM was significantly decreased (-49%) by the lesion and was not affected by NGF or BDNF. The size of the remaining neurons was significantly increased by NGF (+32%), but not by BDNF (+12%). Similarly, in situ hybridization showed enhanced expression of the p75 NGF receptor following treatment with NGF, but not with BDNF. These results suggest that although BDNF occurs in the target area of cholinergic NBM neurons, its effects on these neurons are less pronounced than those of NGF.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)149-155
Number of pages7
JournalBrain Research
Volume639
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 7 1994

Keywords

  • Brain-derived neurotrophic factor
  • Choline acetyl transferase
  • In situ hybridization
  • Nerve growth factor
  • Nucleus basalis magnocellularis
  • p75 NGF receptor

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